I've never been to Olveston. Streetview tells me it's nice but unremarkable. Without a car, it's a tricky place to get to and from. Occasionally a bus passes through the village during the working day, headed for Cribbs Causeway or Yate, but it's not the sort of service you'd rely on for anything beyond a carefully planned trip to the shops; anything more needs a help from a journey-planner or a travel agent. Naturally, most of Olveston's residents will have to depend on a car or three to lead anything like a normal, 21st century life. It's quite nicely placed for that... not far from Almondsbury, Severn Bridge, and the M48/M4 junction.
The village expanded hugely in the sixties, so now something over 2,000 people live there. And they face a common foe in the shape of REG windpower.
|A couple of Cornish wind turbines ruining the view|
REG windpower plan to bring the village to its knees by erecting two wind turbines over the other side of the motorways, at the hamlet of Ingst.
I'm not exaggerating. I've read a few of the objections to the planning application.
The curate takes the view that village children won't be able to concentrate at school, and would be better off with a nuclear reactor for a neighbour.
The owners of a local 'country park' business fear their car-borne customers will be frightened off from their £7 a pop 'uncommercialised' park if a couple of turbines are visible, causing redundancies all round.
Helpfully, a UKIP councillor explains the background.... it's all thanks to European regulation plus the Tory ruling classes, who are “using turbines to generate themselves and their friends huge amounts of money at the expense of the tax payer and the poor people and animals that have to suffer these monstrosities “.
Of course there are also some in that neighbourhood brave (or foolhardy) enough to declare themselves in favour of the turbines, by adding their comments to the planning application. Their addresses are in the application papers. We know where they live.
Meanwhile, the applicants are shamelessly promising that they'll put substantial cash into the local community if the scheme goes ahead. Not only that, but the turbines, once up and running, will be offered to the Bristol Energy Co-operative, if they can raise the finance through a community share offer. Community ownership, in fact. Or creeping socialism.
There's no date yet for the South Glos. planning meeting, and they do still seem to be accepting comments from the public. Mindful that the tip of the turbine blades may be visible from this side of the city, Stockwood Pete has just chipped in with his own two-penn'orth.